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Apes, lice and prehistory

Author(s): Weiss Robin A

Journal: Journal of Biology
ISSN 1478-5854

Volume: 8;
Issue: 2;
Start page: 20;
Date: 2009;
Original page

Abstract Although most epidemic human infectious diseases are caused by recently introduced pathogens, cospeciation of parasite and host is commonplace for endemic infections. Occasional host infidelity, however, provides the endemic parasite with an opportunity to survive the potential extinction of its host. Such infidelity may account for the survival of certain types of human lice, and it is currently exemplified by viruses such as HIV.
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